1 December 2023

Not sure if you should keep grapefruit in the fridge or how to keep it fresh? If so, you are probably wondering: how to store grapefruit?

the short answer

You can leave the grapefruit at room temperature if it is firm and you will eat it in a day or two. Otherwise, it is better to refrigerate the fruit. That’s because grapefruits can last 2-3 weeks in the fridge, but only a few days on the counter.

That’s the quick answer.

Do you want to learn a little more? Here’s what we cover next:

  • how to store a whole grapefruit so it stays fresh
  • When to refrigerate grapefruit
  • dealing with sliced ​​grapefruit
  • choosing the best grapefruits at the grocery store

Let’s jump right in.


While grapefruits are available in a few varieties (red, white, and pink-fleshed are the most popular), all of the information in this article applies to all of them.

two grapefruits
two grapefruits

How to Store Whole Grapefruits

Store your whole grapefruit at room temperature if you are going to eat it soon. Otherwise, place the fruit in the crisper drawer in the refrigerator, where it can keep for up to two to three weeks.

To keep your grapefruit fresh for a long time, you need to slow down moisture loss as much as you can.

For starters, grapefruits are washed and waxed after harvest. That helps a lot with water retention, which is why citrus fruits last quite a while compared to others.

To help them retain quality longer, you can keep grapefruits in a humid environment (optimum relative humidity is 90% to 95%).

One way to do this is to store them in the crisper drawer, which is usually the most humid place in the refrigerator. Another way to keep the humidity high is to place the fruit in a zip-top bag. The bag traps moisture, which reduces moisture loss.

(The resealable bag method is also recommended for storing lemons.)

When it comes to washing grapefruit, put it off until you’re ready to eat the fruit.

Peel grapefruit: work in progress
Peel grapefruit: work in progress

Do grapefruits need to be refrigerated?

Grapefruits don’t require refrigeration, but storing them in the fridge helps them last much longer than at room temperature. This is why refrigeration after purchasing is recommended by almost everyone.

As I mentioned earlier, if the fruit is still fresh and firm, it’s okay to leave it on the counter if you’ll be using it within a couple of days. Otherwise, stick to refrigeration.

In other words, both storage options are viable depending on your circumstances.

Plus, there’s no need to worry that keeping a firm grapefruit in the fridge won’t allow it to ripen properly. That is not the case at all.

Firm grapefruits are already ripe and ready to eat, plus grapefruits do not continue to ripen after being harvested.

That said, if you’ve already cut up your grapefruit, you should store it in the fridge. Let’s talk about it.

Thawed grapefruit added to a smoothie
Thawed grapefruit added to a smoothie

How to Store Cut Grapefruits

Cut, halved, or sectioned grapefruits require refrigeration. Place them in an airtight container or freezer bag and in the refrigerator. They will last about 4-5 days when refrigerated.

It is important to seal the fruit in a container or bag because it prevents it from drying out and keeping odors or microorganisms from the refrigerator. In other words, it helps to preserve quality for longer.

If you have ready-to-eat grapefruit (peeled, pith and membrane removed), but can’t eat it in the next few days, you can freeze it.

Related: Can you freeze grapefruit?

peeled grapefruit on a plate
peeled grapefruit on a plate

How to Select Grapefruits at the Grocery Store

When selecting grapefruits, look for ones that are firm to the touch, feel heavy for their size, and have no blemishes.

Of course, some minor skin blemishes are perfectly fine, but you should avoid grapefruits that are bruised or have soft spots.

If you plan to eat or cook with those grapefruits soon, like the day you buy them or the next day, it’s okay to get the ones that are a little softer. They shouldn’t be super soft, mind you, but it’s okay if they give a little when you squeeze them gently.

If you need yours to last as long as possible, go for the super firm ones.

Related: How long do grapefruits last?

As you can see, picking grapefruit is just like picking lemons, oranges, or other popular citrus fruits. There isn’t much new material to learn here.

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